This section is from the book "Arts & Crafts Magazine Vol1-2", by Hutchinson & Company.
MR. Arthur Morton, who designed our Arts and Crafts medal, has virtually completed his work, and the plaster models have been delivered. The bronze "pattern" has now to be made, and it will have to be carefully chased and finished. It was intended to reproduce in the magazine this month the photographs taken from the plaster, but it has been considered best to wait until photographs can be shown of the actual medal.
The portrait sketch of Signor Cantoni, by Professor Legros, will be looked at with additional interest when I say that this acknowledged expert - the official cast-maker to the Royal College of
Art and the Victoria and Albert Museum - has been induced to give a practical demonstration of his art for the especial benefit of our readers. A full report will he published in the October and
November issues of Arts and Crafts, with numerous special photographs illustrating all the progressive stages of producing a plaster cast from a clay model - in this instance a statuette recently completed by a student of the Royal College of Art.
Strange to say, nothing of this kind has been attempted before by any publication. Not even in
Lanteri's "Modelling" is there anything on the subject, the author having reserved it for a third volume, upon which he is now engaged. Our photographs, I am glad to add, turned out quite successfully, and I venture to think that the series will supplement in a very interesting way those with which we illustrated the demonstration by
Professor Lanteri on "Modelling from Life."
The examiners for the National Art Competition express regret that "the modelling of animals from casts is so poor, and that such unsatisfactory examples have been given to the students from which to work." Why should such models be limited to the antique, when plaster casts from the whole splendid series by that genius, Barye, the greatest "animalier" that ever lived, ought to be easily obtainable ? In the United States they are found not only in all the good art schools, but in the homes of thousands of persons of taste, who rightly regard them as among the most beautiful "mantel ornaments" imaginable. What, indeed, could be more admirable for such a purpose than
Barye's " Walking Lion " and " Walking Lioness," and what better models could be put before the art student ? American collectors had the presience to buy up most of the proofs of Barbadienne's fine bronzes after Barye when they could be had for a song. They are now worth their weight in silver, if not in gold.
I wonder how many artists there are who are leaving England, or have left, for their holiday outing in search of the picturesque, who know the quaint old fishing village of Shoreham, from which I am sending these notes. Very few, I imagine, from my casual inquiries on the subject, and yet the place in many respects is unique, and it is only a few miles from Brighton. You have to cross rather a wide river in order to get from the town to the beach, and a rich revenue in coppers would be garnered by the ferrymen if there were not so many of them to share it. A numerous class of passengers are the horses which are employed on the beach by scores, and at low-tide are constantly crossing and recrossing; they are one of the features of the place. Of course, the local Charon gets no revenue out of them - they wade. The quaintest feature of Shoreham are the bungalows, most of which consist wholly, or in part, of disused railway carriages. They extend along the beach for about two miles, in some places a hundred yards or so apart, but generally they are pretty close together, and occasionally two rows deep. Some are arranged with taste, and with their tall flagstaffs and flutter-ing- pennants present a gay appearance. Several hundred railway carriages have been used in the building of "Bungalow Town" - as some people call it - and, if I am correctly informed that the railway company demands 30 for each of the coaches delivered upon the beach, it would seem to get a fair salvage on its superannuated rolling stock. Goods cars and even some cattle trucks are also brought into requisition, as store-houses and out-houses.
The bungalow occupied by myself is a very ingenious affair. There are several coaches to each wing, which at one side open on to the beach, and at the other into a large saloon or lounge, an extension of which to the rear gives a second sitting-room, off the kitchen. To go to your bed-room you open the carriage door. It reminds me of the saloon of an American steamboat with "state-rooms" right and left. The inside windows of the carriages are covered with mirrors, which greatly increase the apparent size of the apartment, but they rather suggest the idea of a hair-dresser's saloon. The bedrooms which get the afternoon sun are rather hot then, but those on the other side are always cool, and so is the lounge, which is protected by an attic, which serves as an air chamber. Each bedroom has a ventilator in the roof in place of the usual lamp opening. "Bungalow Town" has virtually only come into existence during the last few years, and this no doubt accounts for its being so little known; but old Shoreham Church, a most interesting example of Norman architecture, has long been visited by antiquarians, and the lovely scenery at the back of the town must be known to thousands of Sussex people.
The subject is a clay statuette, modelled from life by one of the students. Our first photograph represents the division of the model by means of a band of clay, preliminary to the application of the plaster, to form the mould.